Plowing the Field

I recently started watching The Little House on the Prairie. I remember as a kid how much my mother loved that show. I know I have seen bits and pieces of it before, but I wanted to begin watching it all in order from the beginning.

Not only is it a sweet show (and can give you a good cry often), but it has really taught me much about agriculture!

In the first few episodes, Pa starts plowing a field which he later hopes to use to grow crops. He spends many days in the field, preparing the soil for seeds to be planted. He even goes through a couple of unexpected challenges with the plowing stage and shows the hard work that comes in this preparation.

I think there is a lot of hope that can be found within the plowing stage. Farmers spend many great days and weeks to turn up the soil, so that crops can flourish and grow across their land. There is hope that one day their field will be full of harvest for miles and miles.

Does he not certainly speak for our sake? It was written for our sake, because the plowman should plow in hope and the thresher thresh in hope of sharing in the crop. – 1 Corinthians 9:10

What I find very interesting about the act of plowing a field is that plowing is “turning up the soil” that is already present. It isn’t completely clearing all the soil in the land and replacing it with new soil. Instead, it is uses what is rooted in the ground. It reveals the soil that is underneath the topsoil. In doing so, it brings fresh nutrients to the surface, while burying weeds and other remains in the soil to decay.

I’m grateful for the opportunities where I’ve been able to reflect on many experiences in my life where I’ve seen God shape me and transform my character. I’ve learned about how He truly desires to shape us into the workmanship He longs for us to be and the work He hopes we will do for His kingdom.

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. – Genesis 1:27

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” – Jeremiah 1:5

Sometimes, we have times of plowing, maybe before a new chapter or season of our life starts. Those moments of hope before you start the new job, before you move to a new city, before you start a new adventure, whatever that may look like.

I remember when I found out I got accepted into graduate school. There was a lot of hope and excitement at that time I found out I was accepted. However, I had many things to do before that new stage came along. I still was finishing up my undergraduate studies. I needed to find a place to live before I could move to a new city. Then, there were all the things that come with moving like packing up, cleaning out, and saying goodbyes. The preparation of the new season required some hard work before it could fully begin.

While being full of hope, there can be fear within us as well. Farmers may not always know how the weather will play out with the crops. They can’t control if it will be a dry season or a great season for their crops. Yet, they still do the hard work that comes with preparing the field.

“so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God” – Ephesians 3:17-19

God creates us, knows us, and sees what we will become. Over time, the lessons that we learn and the values we come to cherish become deeply rooted in us. We are like the soil, with nutrients already planted within us to identify who we are and to allow opportunities for further growth. As Christians, we have Christ living within us that gives us hope and prepares us for the active steps to come in new seasons.

Plowing gives us an opportunity of hope as well as opportunity of active remembrance. It allows us to remember and refresh ourselves on what our foundation is: Where does our identity come from? Who does God say we are? What are the values we care most about in life? What motivates us?

I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. – Romans 12:1-2

During these times of plowing, we can turn up the soil underneath that allow us to renew our minds on what our firm foundation is before newness is added to our lives. Before the sowing of the seeds begins, we can reflect on the treasures and lessons learned that are stored up within us, to guide us and give us discernment of where to go next, with God beside us on the journey.

With love,


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